Wishing you the very best this Thanksgiving. Celebrating with friends and family in our own harvest festival traditions, let us give thanks to all of God’s abundance. Truly a blessed time!
God and Liberty: Reasons for Thanksgiving
Of the many influences that shaped the American concept of liberty, the first and most formative was faith. More than anything else, religion formed the backbone of colonial culture and defined its moral horizon.
This religious character was largely a product of the fact that many came to the New World in search of religious liberty—to freely practice and spread their faith.
As a whole, America’s Founders were strongly religious. Thanksgiving proclamations, as official statements of the American president, underscore the Founders’ faith. Some were more traditional, such as John Jay and John Witherspoon. Some were more skeptical of religious institutions and doctrines, such as Thomas Paine and Thomas Jefferson.
But the vast majority of the Founders were firmly in the mainstream of religious belief. They understood God as having created man with an immortal soul, as actively involved in human affairs and as “the Supreme Judge of the world”—in the words of the Declaration of Independence.
The day after approving the First Amendment to the Constitution and its protections of religious liberty, Congress called upon the president to “recommend to the people of the United States a day of public thanksgiving and prayer, to be observed by acknowledging, with grateful hearts, the many signal favors of Almighty God.”
President George Washington responded by proclaiming Nov. 26, 1789 the first official Thanksgiving. He noted:
It is the duty of all nations to acknowledge the providence of Almighty God, to obey his will, to be grateful for his benefits, and humbly implore his protection and favor.”
Even the deists among the Founders—and it is by no means the case that they were mostly deists, as some have claimed—held that God created the world and determined the rules of human action.
It is a fool only, and not the philosopher, nor even the prudent man, that will live as if there were no God.”
A Taste of Thanksgiving History
Many of us have forgotten the difficult first winter the Plymouth Colony pilgrims endured in 1621. The arduous two-month Atlantic voyage on the Mayflower combined with the brutally cold winter would ultimately claim the lives of almost half of the original pilgrims by springtime.
The True Meaning ThanksGiving Give Thanks Pass It On
A Day Of Thanksgiving (1951) Thankful for American Freedom
Ronald Reagan talks to Amercia on Thanksgiving Day 1985
In the Spirit of Thanksgiving
The Thanksgiving Song Military Tribute
I Love You –God
And now…something a bit humorous.
Thanksgiving SUCKS!! (So does America)